October 2020 Meeting Minutes

The BGALA September meeting was hosted by the RailPark on October 13, 2020.

Alisha Dalrymple reported a bank balance of just over $12,500 as of meeting time. Expenses over the past month were the Vid Monster PSA video production, recurring 2020 PMA Markies Gold Awards $350 event sponsorship, board meeting lunch, and Unseen Bowling Green sponsorship.

ATTRACTION REPORTS:

CVB: Beth Noffsinger reported. The CVB’s tourism transmission partner email is going out every Tuesday, please let Beth or Marissa know if you are not receiving. The CVB also launched a monthly leisure email newsletter. The WHAS Louisville partnership is still running a social media campaign thru Oct. 18, and its Great Day Live and One Tank Trips episodes have aired. The Kentucky Dept of Travel is taking holiday media pitches and those were included in the tourism transmission partner email, thanks to all who have submitted ideas thus far. Amy attended Virtual Sports ETA conference and spoke with 19 planners there, and several Mid-South Conference events are coming up later this month and next spring. The CVB is getting drone photography of sports facilities to make a brochure for sports events rights holders. Email Beth if you want the most recent 2021 event calendar for sports/leisure/motorsports. Janet just got back from Cruisin’ the Coast in Mississippi, where she promoted motorsports events and the new crawl course at the NCM Motorsports Park. The new crawl course should be finished soon. Renovations are done at Sloan, and Sherry and Janet hope to get a tour this week. Janet is attending ConnectFaith conference in Las Vegas next week then attending a virtual Destinations Southeast tradeshow, so she’ll be telling planners about the Sloan renovations. A Chevy club is considering postponing their event from 2021 to 2022, but a decision hasn’t been made. Taz Trucking signs partnered with the CVB and Chamber to help fund 800 signs for semi trucks driving all over the country. They have visitbgky.com on them as part of the Bowling Green being a best place to live campaign. Thanks to Dharmi Shah from Super 8 South and the CVB board for representing the CVB office at the sign unveiling event last week. The CVB has Fall advertising campaigns running in Kentucky Monthly magazine and is working on a southcentral Kentucky spirits (like drinks, not Halloween) guide.

Sloan Convention Center: No report.

Lost River Cave: No report.

National Corvette Museum: Debbie Eaton reported. The NCM Ambassadors Convention is coming up November 10-11, in the couple days leading up to the Vets n Vettes weekend event.

NCM Motorsports Park: Kenzie Layton reported. The Kartplex is still open and running through October 31. Though it will be closed to the public then, it will still be available for private group outings and rentals. Twinkle at the Track promotions are starting and Kenzie had hotel opportunities available. First, hotels can purchase tickets at a discounted $10/ticket and use for including in promotional opportunities and packages. Second, hotels can get up to 10 free passes to give to frontline staff to get the experience and share with guests. And third, hotels can participate by in an ad buy in the Twinkle coupon booklet that all attendees receive, with an ad at half cost. Kenzie had sign-up sheets, but will also be dropping them off at hotels. The Crawl Course is almost complete and local Jeep Club members have been testing it out with feedback. The NASA Great Lakes event is coming up October 23-25 weekend, and the SCCA and Optima events last weekend had great attendance.

Historic RailPark: Jamie Johnson reported. The Unseen Bowling Green tours have been well received and sold out twice, with a final 4 new dates added. Debbie at the Corvette Museum has been the tour guide for these. The Cemetery Road Murders book by Wes Swietek that Unseen tour is based on is available for purchase at the Railpark. There are also other books available for purchase that tie into RailPark hosted events–the Pauline Tabor book by Mary Lucas is available, and Mary will be hosting an author event on October 23 at the Depot sharing Pauline stories and footage from the Dick Cavett Show in the 1970s with Pauline as the guest star. The Cemetery Road Murders book official launch event will be at the Depot the weekend of November 13-14 with wine, food, and a q&a. Amy Disparte’s Civil War in Bowling Green book is also available at the RailPark. Polar Express event will be happening this year, but a limited number of tickets will be available–a public announcement will be made the last week of October. With the cost of the event running $2,500 per night, the number of nights and tickets that can be planned rely solely on event sponsorship. The tickets will go to RailPark members and sponsors first, and the number of public tickets will be announced later.

Beech Bend Park: No report.

Bowling Green Hot Rods Baseball: No report.

Mid-South Conference: Eric Ward reported. All conference Fall sports were moved to spring, with 19 conference events tentatively scheduled for January thru May next year. There will be a couple of invitational events non-conference events too.

The featured speakers at this meeting were Jamie Dobbs and Jill Goodwin from WNKY TV. When BGALA put together an idea for a PSA campaign to encourage locals to invite their friends and family to visit and plan staycations, BGALA reached out to WNKY for partnership ideas. The team developed the new Live. Love. Local. campaign centered around the BGALA partnership. The TV station is running our PSA video on its channels right now, and is taking this steps further by putting together at least 9 weeks worth of staycation giveaways from November 6 thru Christmas week. Each giveaway will feature a 1-night hotel stay coupled with an activity, attraction, restaurant or retail gift card. The WNKY team has built a standalone page on its website, where all BGALA partners info will live for the duration of the contest, with direct links to all partner booking pages. Visit wnky.com/local to see the page, where they collect email addresses of registrants, then share with us as partners for prospecting. The weekly contests feature social media mentions for the partners, and on-air mentions on Soky Sunrise morning news on Mondays and Fridays, and digital ads on the WNKY website directing visitors to the Live. Love. Local. contest. To participate in 1 week of the campaign, a hotel must supply a free 1-night stay certificate and $250. There are 5 hotels currently committed, and the program needs at least 4 more hotels to be active through Christmas. The TV station staff is taking care of soliciting partners on this campaign, with other local entities already signed up for several weeks and eager to partner with our association as this type of partnership has never been done–Nats Outdoor Sports, Reindeer Farm, RailPark, and Parent Teacher Store as of meeting time. If this is successful and the association members are pleased with their promotion and return, WNKY could extend this through February. Ask jamie.dobbs@wnky.com for more info.

OLD BUSINESS:

The BGALA Fall Scholarship will proceed as normal. Due date is October 15 and the application is on the BGALA website. The scholarship is for any WKU student currently employed at a hotel or attraction in the association.

The BGALA endowed scholarship through College Heights Foundation will be awarded for payment in the Spring 2021 semester. This is for any WKU student currently enrolled in the Hospitality Management program and working in a hotel or attraction member.

Do any of these current 10 scholarship applicants work at your hotel or member business? Please contact Kacie if so: Christian Murphy, Logan Mills, Anna Hinsburg, Hannah Rapp, Emily Sharp, Peyton Wolfe, Courtney Brangers, MaHayla Powers, Abby Dunn, and Megan Polen.

The #gearedfortravel PSA campign is active on social media and another video and boost will be rolled out for the holiday season.

NEW BUSINESS:

The BGALA Christmas Party will be Tuesday, December 8, later in the afternoon, at the NCM Motorsports Park. There will be an optional dirty Santa type game, so please bring a $15 wrapped gift if you want to participate. The Twinkle at the Track drive thru will be available to attendees.

The next meeting will be held Tuesday, November 10 at Hilton Garden Inn with Thanksgiving dinner. Thanks, Byron.

About the Author: Telia Butler